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3 bombshells that Nobody Bothered to Tell Me

(133 Posts)
Eyezswideshut Sat 23-Nov-19 14:10:18

Background

Live with DP for 1.5 years now. We've both always contributed to all our shared lifestyle roughly 50/50 but sometimes one person will be in a better financial position than the other so usually 1 is paying most and then it swaps around. Never had an issue with this. He does as much as me in that sense.

DP has 2 kids he sees regularly. They stay over and we also get on well. There has never been any issue with his ex. His ex is on very good terms with his family. They were childhood sweethearts and their families are located in the same area (2-3 generations). We live a little bit away from them so don't see them all as much but ex spends a lot of time with his female relatives. This isn't the problem, I'm just setting the scene so you all might be able to understand how this happened.

DP's work is project based. He gets paid per job but it might be months between pay checks of a few thousand pounds depending on the size of the project. As far as I understood, he pays for the kids out of this money as and when it comes on an informal arrangement. Their kids don't seem to want for anything and they were always amicable so I assumed that his ex was happy with this and received sufficient money.

To sum up, my impression was that DP had always been a involved Dad who was hands on and paid for his kids. Nobody ever said a bad word about him and his kids seem to love him to bits. The only small clue I had to the contrary is that he was clueless when shopping for his daughter.

1st Bombshell

We planned a baby. We planned for me to work part time in my own business (mobile hairdresser) after a year of maternity leave. We planned to use the deposit I've saved and buy somewhere (we've saved some etc). When ex found out about me being pregnant, she called ex and said she wants a chat with him about the future. He came back saying that she wants to formalize maintenance and from the figures they worked out together, it will mean that we can't go forward with most of the plans we had. I'd have to go back to work by 6 months (to a salon) and the money we have saved will have to cover living expenses.

At the time, people questioned (on here) how making the support formal would change his expenditure so drastically if he was always paying a sufficient amount for his children. It didn't occur to me that he wasn't.

2nd Bombshell

Ex lets me know that he probably won't wake up for feeds or to help in the night because he does "day time". I've had a history of a severe depressive episode in my teens that started when I was not sleeping due to exam/peer stresses. I'm now very anxious about not sleeping in case it happens again. He lets me know that ex spent most nights with her mum when the kids were young to get help. I had no clue this was how it went whatsoever.

3rd Bombshell

I reach out to DP's mum and sister who tell me that he was a shitty dad/partner. Fun but not dependable and since we have been together (2.5 years), he has barely given his ex a penny. The only thing he contributes is what I see (clothes,trainers, days out,toys) and that they (mum and his older sister) used to get the kids basics to help out the kid's mum. He would buy something ultra trendy for their birthdays or Xmas but for his benefit rather than theirs. They laughed when I expressed my ignorance to all this and said obviously considering they are still on good terms, theyd be together if he was a good dad/partner. They said he loves his kids but he's too much of a Jack the Lad to be more hands on.

I can't believe they haven't told me all this. I'm now 38 weeks pregnant with our baby and I can't do it alone. My parents told me that it was silly to have my first marriage/baby with someone whose done it all already and they are BOTH married to other people with kids themselves.

Don't you think people should have let me know sooner? I probably know 50-75 of his close family and friends (think East End type area) and they've never given me any impression other than that he is a brilliant dad and a great catch.

OP’s posts: |
SmallAndFarAway Sat 23-Nov-19 14:17:00

It might be the shock, but do you not think it's your partner you should be upset with here? He's the one who didn't pay maintenance for example...

user1493413286 Sat 23-Nov-19 14:20:24

I would imagine everyone assumed that you knew; I don’t think they’re to blame. I am sorry for the position you’re in though and that your partner hasn’t turned out to be who you thought he was.

AgentProvocateur Sat 23-Nov-19 14:22:14

The only person yoh should be annoyed with is your feckless partner. I guess everyone else thought that you’d have asked how much maintenance he paid so that you could have taken it into account in your budgeting when you moved in together.

Unfortunately, it looks like you’ll have to do it on your own

lljkk Sat 23-Nov-19 14:23:54

Can your parents come around to being more supportive?
Do you want to keep this man in your life?

Themyscira Sat 23-Nov-19 14:28:34

You really should be pointing the finger of blame at your partner, surely?

GrapefruitGin Sat 23-Nov-19 14:29:17

I’m sorry you’re going through this but why should it be up to anyone to tell you? You planned a baby with him so the sensible thing would have been to have a conversation about both of your expectations. Sorry but sounds like you’re going to be doing this alone.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Sat 23-Nov-19 14:29:33

Yes, people should probably have been more honest, but can you imagine how that conversation would have gone? How would they even have started it? And would you have been ready to hear it?

The fault here lies with your partner.

Now actually, he hasn't done anything wrong to you yet (obvs he's been keeping his kids and ex short for years) so you don't need to panic. You need to use this time to really think about what you want from your relationship post baby. Outline this to your partner. And then the second he deviates from what you expect, be ready to move on. No second chances.

And keep hold of as much cash as you possibly can. You'll need it.

I'm sorry this has happened to you at what should be a happy time.

Butterymuffin Sat 23-Nov-19 14:35:21

Hmm, they probably thought it would be a case of 'shoot the messenger' as often happens.

Look more closely at how things work when his kids come to you. Who does the hands on work, who takes them out, who cooks their meals, does their washing, puts them to bed? Who buys their stuff when they need it? Does he know who their friends are, what they enjoy and what upsets them?

If he's slacking in these areas, he needs to step up, as you will be giving him no choice but to do so with your new baby.

BestOption Sat 23-Nov-19 14:40:13

Jesus.

I’m sorry this has all come as ‘news’ to you at this stage if your pregnancy 🌷

I’m not sure why you think his family would have told you though. They’re blood they’re hardly going to be broadcasting his fuckwittery or risk alienating him by tell his new partner what a shit head he is!

I’m also incredibly gob smacked thst you’ve never discussed how much he gives his ex for the kids.

I’m not surprised his ex now wants to formalise payments, I’m more surprised she hasn’t done so before now!

What’s your relationship like with her? Was she giving you friendly advice or being a bit nasty? If she was being friendly then I’d get in touch to tell her I didn’t know he hadn’t been paying anything towards their children & that you’re disgusted with him.

What has HE had to say about it all?

Do NOT use any money you have saved to do anything in joint names, you need to keep your money in your name!!

Dollymixture22 Sat 23-Nov-19 14:41:26

It wasn’t their place to tell you, and would have believed them anyway?

In all the time you have been together have you not asked about his maintenance arrangement, especially when you were doing your sums for a mortgage?

It’s awful he hasn’t contributed to his children’s upkeep. I’m afraid I couldn’t be with a man who shirked his responsibilities like this.

If you choose to stay, be very careful with money. Take legal advice before you buy a house, and consider how you could afford housing etc without him.

If you do split, make sure you go through formal processes to get child support.

Be kind to his ex wife, she has been treated appallingly.

Eyezswideshut Sat 23-Nov-19 14:43:09

Who does the hands on work, who takes them out, who cooks their meals, does their washing, puts them to bed? Who buys their stuff when they need it? Does he know who their friends are, what they enjoy and what upsets them?

He buys them stuff all the time these days. But it is more like a Nike tracksuit than a packet of boxers or vests IYSWIM. Now I'm buying for my own child,I see the point. He has given me two lump sums to buy stuff and come and helped pick it out.

He knows their friends and all of that.

The thing with his kids is that they do a lot themselves and always has done. Nobody puts them to bed. Never have done as long as I've been around. And they do the same at their Nan's. They have clothes here which is in the normal laundry loads for us. He puts on the odd wash.

I cook or he gets a takeaway when they are over.

He mostly sees to their emotional needs when they are here and he isnt working which is most of the time they are here. This is why I had no clue. Not just about money but that he isnt the na po y changing type.

OP’s posts: |
Goldenchildsmum Sat 23-Nov-19 14:45:03

Don't you think people should have let me know sooner? I probably know 50-75 of his close family and friends (think East End type area) and they've never given me any impression other than that he is a brilliant dad and a great catch.

The in laws probably thought you knew and didn't mind.

Your DP is to blame for ALL this.

Although if I had been his ex wife I would have made sure to have had a legal maintenance agreement drawn up in some way during the divorce

Your DP sounds like an absolute imbecile. I definitely couldn't be in a relationship with anyone like that

FreeBedForFlys Sat 23-Nov-19 14:46:31

It’s not their fault you didn’t do a bit more research on the man before you got pregnant.

Eyezswideshut Sat 23-Nov-19 14:46:40

I have asked about maintenance and he basically said he gives her something everytime he gets paid and I did see evidence of this early on. I just wasn't on his back about it and everybody seemed happy so it didn't occur to me.

I'm not angry at his family. I do think there was room to tell me but I don't blame them. I'm actually staying at his mum's as I write this.

My family arent unsupportive per se,they just advised strongly against being with a guy with kids because of the complexity of the relationships.

OP’s posts: |
Goldenchildsmum Sat 23-Nov-19 14:46:43

At the time, people questioned (on here) how making the support formal would change his expenditure so drastically if he was always paying a sufficient amount for his children. It didn't occur to me that he wasn't.

Why didn't you heed the warning and ask some questions of your DP

Eyezswideshut Sat 23-Nov-19 14:47:21

Oh they were never married. We've discussed marriage.

OP’s posts: |
HollowTalk Sat 23-Nov-19 14:47:48

Oh god, what a shock. I gasped when I saw you were pregnant already.

Is this something you can tolerate?

Eyezswideshut Sat 23-Nov-19 14:47:55

I did ask after that. That's what led to the other bombshell

OP’s posts: |
onalongsabbatical Sat 23-Nov-19 14:48:48

He isn't the nappy changing type? Not a parental type then? So best not to produce kids really?
Honestly OP, this is on you going into it with your eyes closed I'm afraid.

acatcalledjohn Sat 23-Nov-19 14:49:28

I'm now 38 weeks pregnant with our baby and I can't do it alone.

Given that he's already told you he won't be doing night feeds, and barely does anything around the house, indicate you will be alone regardless of whether you stay with him.

In fact, taking him out of the equation may well make things easier.

luckygreeneyes Sat 23-Nov-19 14:51:36

I’d be very concerned about using your savings for anything joint if you’re not married. Do you know how much he earns? You need to work out a budget

Thesearmsofmine Sat 23-Nov-19 14:55:49

This is on you and him.

When you were planning your baby, did you not look at the money coming in and money going out(including his maintenance payments)?

DawgLover Sat 23-Nov-19 14:56:03

I suppose the bigger question is what are you going to do now that you know all of this?

Can you live with a partner that by these accounts is more of a Disney Dad that equal partner? If your partner works during the day, and won't be helping during the night what level of parenting do you actually think he will be doing? Now that he'll be forced to pay his ex a reasonable amount, do you believe he'll also contribute fairly to your household?

FrogCat Sat 23-Nov-19 14:56:41

It sounds like you’ve just had a massive reality check. I’d be worried if I were you, too. If he hasn’t properly financially supported his two children it doesn’t bode well for him supporting three.

As for the ‘I don’t change nappies’ spiel...that is pathetic and I couldn’t be attracted to a man with this attitude.

He sounds immature and irresponsible on all levels.

I’m sorry you’re going through this when you’re about to have a baby. I don’t think I would want to be with someone so feckless, though....

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